Gallo: Super Bowl LVII lived up to the hype


elisfkc2, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Superbowl LVII delivered memorable performance Feb. 12 after a dramatic second-half comeback by the Kansas City Chiefs.

Jules Gallo, Staff Writer

The Kansas City Chiefs are now Super Bowl LVII champions, winning an all-time classic game against the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35 in February. 

The game began with Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts marching the team down for a touchdown, only for the Chiefs to answer back with a touchdown of their own through quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Key plays in the first half included Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker hitting the uprights on a field goal attempt — known as a doink in football jargon — and Hurts fumbling near midfield, leading to a scoop and score by linebacker Nick Bolton in a potential 14-point swing for the Chiefs. 

Still, the Eagles held on to a 24-14 lead at halftime, which was even more poignant after Mahomes hurt his ankle near the end of the half. However, after some medical tent magic and Rihanna’s halftime performance, he led a comeback, resulting in the Chiefs pulling ahead 35-27 late in the fourth quarter. 

Finally, after several successful quarterback runs, the Eagles were able to tie the game at 35-35, but they left too much time on the clock. The Chiefs went into range for the game-winning field goal with 11 seconds left, icing the game and winning the third championship in the team’s history.

The Chiefs’ win proves Mahomes’ stature as an NFL great. He won his second Lombardi Trophy in four years after getting his ankle wrecked in the second half. He put up three touchdowns and no interceptions, with a quarterback rating of 131.8/158.3 in a phenomenal performance. 

Travis Kelce once again showed his ability as the best tight end in football. His six receptions for 81 yards proved a game changer even in the Chiefs’ weapon-filled offense. 

Chiefs coach Andy Reid deserves a year-long victory lap after a season-long effort to prove his offense could work without star wide receiver Tyreek Hill, who was traded to the Miami Dolphins before the season. He made his system work with all the talent around him, regardless of perceived value on other teams. 

As for the Eagles, they’ll be back. Head coach Nick Sirianni and Hurts proved many of their doubters wrong this season, going further than ever expected by pundits. They also own picks 10 and 30 in the 2023 NFL Draft, so they should be able to reload for next season. The remaining questions are if they can repeat their success and if their defensive line will not flop on the biggest stage. After having four players reach double digits for sacks for the season, having zero on Mahomes is a travesty. 

It should be noted that the game did include one major instance of refball: a debatable defensive holding call on Eagles defensive back Avontae Maddox on third and 6 in the final two minutes of the game. This gave the Chiefs an automatic first down, letting them run out the clock and kick the game-winning field goal. Sadly, much of the narrative over the Chiefs win has been focused on the call instead of the game played by Mahomes, Kelce and the Chiefs as a whole. The call itself was significant, but there is no way to tell if it had not been called if the Eagles would have won. In the end, it is yet another example of the NFL needing to update its officiating to include instant replay. 

Regardless of controversy, Super Bowl LVII lived up to the hype. It was a clash of the two best teams in the country, and it resulted in a flashy display of big plays, major swings and the cementing of Reid’s and Mahomes’ legacies. For the Chiefs, Eagles and the rest of the NFL, see you next year.